Community Theatre ReviewTO, VIVIANNEJANUARY, 11, 2018 From demolition site, to roaring theatre, the Royal Alexandra Theatre, located at 260 King St W, Toronto, Ontario, is one of the most oldest and most famous theaters in North America.
Owned, and operated under “Mirvish Productions”, and David Mirvish, the theatre is home to over 3,000 plays. The Royal Alexandra expresses the aspiration of the stockbroker Cawthra Mulock, and his group of wealthy business men, who all had a wish and desire to put their town of Toronto on the map by building “the finest theatre on the continent” (Last name, year).Since Cawthra, the leader has since died, David Mirvish bought the theatre, and wished to complete Cawthra’s desire, which has been greatly achieved. The Royal Alexandra strives to share the love of dramatic theatre to the public.
The Royal Alexandra offers three levels, 1,497-seat, neoclassical architectural design, an ancient theatre stage, with two balcony levels, built in the style typical of 19th century British theatres. ***look for statement or vision statement Commonly referred to as the “R.A.T”, or “The Alex”, the legally “Royal” Alexandra Theatre was named after Queen Alexandra, the wife of King Edward VII, and great grandmother of the current Queen of Canada. It is the oldest operating, and legitimate theatre in North America. At the time of it’s 1907 grand opening, the theatre sat on an “upscale” neighborhood, now currently known as the corner of King and Simcoe street. The theatre was financed by a group of business leaders.
John McIntosh Lyle was the architect selected by these men for the “R.A.T”. They gave Lyle a budget of $750,000, as well as the instruction’s to “Build us the finest theatre on the continent” (Last name, year). Though Lyle went three times over the budget, the final product is one that is widely applauded. The theatre is widely recognized and known for its “outstanding” plays.
Over the years, the theatre’s income declined. Not being able to withstand the upcoming popularity of technological entertainment, the men behind Mulock estate up for sale, for $250,000. One condition of the sale being that, Ed Mirvish must continue operating the Royal Alex as a theatre for at least five years. If, at the end of the five years, he did not want to continue, he was then allowed to demolish the building and use the site for other reasons. He closed the theatre for a year for renovation, and since its opening, the theatre is striving.